BUTWAL: Editors of the Lumbini Province have expressed their commitment to prioritise issues of Dalit community in their media. The commitments of the editors have come during the two-day long dialogue organised by Jagaran Media Centre at Butwal on Tuesday and Wednesday. The editors have expressed commitment to raise the issues related to the caste-based and all forms of discrimination through a 10-point commitment paper issued after the function.
They are committed to ensure proportional representation of Dalit community at both the government-owned and private media as per the spirit of the constitution and inclusiveness. The participants of the function have demanded implementation of National Mass Communication Policy making it Dalit-friendly, appointments related to communication at the institutions of the provinces and local governments should be inclusive and representation of Dalit community be ensured at the editorial teams of the private media.
The commitment paper has also stated that a policy should be brought to ensure special privilege to the media run by Dalits and women including tax exemption and also to the media being published in different languages. The Butwal commitment paper has expressed commitment to publish and broadcast various issues related to Dali and gender, preparing a regular plan besides covering the related incidents.
The editors have also demanded that the bill related to Mass Communication registered at the Provincial Assembly must be rewritten by withdrawing it from the assembly because it was against the constitution and press freedom. More than 25 editors participated in the discussion. During the meeting Chairman of National Dalit Journalists Association and senior journalist Binod Pahadi stressed the need of raising Dalit issues minutely in the Nepali media. He said the presence of Dalit journalists in the media has increased and now non-Dalit journalists should raise the issues of Dalit.
Addressing the discussion central committee member of Federation of Nepali Journalists (FNJ) Bhawani Prasad Pandey said a qualitative change is essential in the issues of Dalit. He said there was increase in the number of Dalit journalists now and therefore there is a need of taking an initiation to raise the issues by changing the existing policy. General secretary of the Lumbini Province of the FNJ BikramKhadka also said that the media must be sensitive on the issues of Dalit community. He said in some instances representatives of Dalit community themselves do not speak on Dalit issues.
During the function chairman of Rupandehi district committee of the FNJ Ramraj Pokharel said the media should give attention to the issues of Dalits who are in the lowest strata of the society.
The editors and journalists expressing commitment on raising Dalit issues are Yanesh GC-former chairman of FNJ Rupandehi and editor of Lumbini Daily, Amrita Anmol-vice-chair of FNJ Rupandehi, Bishnu Bhusal- Lumbini coordinator of the Television Broadcasters Association, Damodar Khanal-editorial advisor, Ram Prasad Acharya-editor of Janasangharsha daily, Kamal Rayamajhi-editor of Lumbini Khabar, Naresh KC- editor of Samata TV, Pradip Acharya-editor of Lumbini Times, CP Khanal, Bhuwan Karki -editor of Milapatra Khabar, Kalpana Tiwari-station manager of Radio Mukti, Tejendra KC-editor of Swadhin monthly, NB Kandel-editor of Global Aawaj, Chinta Pariyar-manager of Mero Sathi FM Kapilvastu, Tanka Sunar-editor of Devdah TV and Prakash Acharya of Mechikali daily.
The function chaired by Chairperson of JagaranMedia Centre Kamala Bishwokarma was conducted by Binod Pariyar in which JMC secretary Krishna Darnal had welcomed the guests.